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View Full Version : Thoughts on the 2004 USA Presidential elections, and where I go from here


Volcana
Nov 9th, 2004, 04:18 AM
This was an interesting election for me. I voted for a Democrat for President for the first time in my life.

I sit back now,and consider the potential for damage of a Republican House, Senate, Supreme Court and President, and I realize that, in many ways, this is the 21 Century equivalent of the Dred Scott decision. A low point, in other words, but one that forces one to take a long view.

There's nothing to be done about the Anti-Christ occupying the Oval Office. What's done is done. The filibuster is the Dems last chip, and the Republicans are already talking about changing the rules of the Senate to eliminate that. I hope the Dems force them to do it, rather than compromise, but I don't hold out much hope.

Progressives need to realize that this is likely to be a very long, very hard struggle, with no certainty of victory. If as incompetent and dishonest a man as Bush can lie, steal, cheat and connive his way to 'victory' with so little outcry from the Democrats, I would not expect significant opposition of the Bush agenda from them.

Well, first things first. As progressives, we need to define what our core values truly are, the things that bind us together, and then find candidates with a consistent history of holding to those values. 'Republican Light' won't cut it. The we have to find a way to communicate with the rest pf the voters. That won't be easy.

Also, among oursleves, we need to discuss the last 150 years of race relations, how they've affected politics, and how we handle the topic in the future. We are not going to be able to have an honest discussion with Republicans about this issue, so there's no need to waste any energy trying. In the last presidential campaign, how often was race even mentioned by the candidates? Yet, it was THE subtext of Republican voter suppression efforts. We need a better way of countering those. Our sole edge is that Republicans won't admit in public they are TRYING to deny Blacks and American Indians the vote.

And MAYBE, just maybe, it's time to start trying to suppress the Republican vote. If the Republicans have proved anything, it's that lying, cheating and stealing leads to politicial success. We need to at least DISCUSS matching them dirty trick for dirty trick.

I'm in the middle of an adoption. And I think of how many rights I had growing up that my child will not.

I'll have to explain that the government didn't used to have the legal right to enter your home without notice or even admitting they were there.

I'll have to explain that the government didn't used to have the legal right to imprison you without notice, or even admitting they were holding you.

I'll have to explain that once upon a time, Americans didn't fear speaking out. They weren't afraid of being called 'unpatriot'.

I'll have to explain that once upon a time, the right to dissent was considered what the United States BETTER.

I'll have to explain that once upon a time, reason was the governed the legislative process, not religion.

I'll have to explain that once upon a time, for a few short golden years, the United States OPPOSED unprovoked aggression, rather than engaging in it.

We talk about leaving, my partner and I. But our families are here. Our friends are here.

Still are there 'freer' societies in the world? Once upon a time, I'd have said 'no'. Now I look a couple hundred miles north to Canada, and wonder if 'yes' isn't staring me in the face.

I look at a judicial system that send 10% of all Black males to prison, and I KNOW there are fairer, more just judiciaries in the world.

I suppose this is a 'watershed' moment. I DON'T see things reversing in the USA for the foreseeable future. The Republicans will NEVER field a worse candidate, with a worse record, than they did in 2004.

NEVER.

So .... this was an interesting election for me. I voted for a Democrat for President for the first time in my life. And quite probably the last. I think the future turns on more radical solutions.

Philbo
Nov 9th, 2004, 04:32 AM
Volcana I just wish there was something I could do to help the feelings of utter despair you, me, and countless others across the GLOBE feel about the result...

My faith in humanity has really taken a huge battering... But then I think about the fact that it only came down to one or two states and the result could have been so different.

I really think the democrats need to infiltrate the church's and the whole bible belt community as the Republicans have done. I think there is the chance of stealing some of their votes there from TRUE christians.

True christians would look at the poverty figures and would look at POVERY as a MORAL issue - not just whether same sex couples are allowed to make a lifelong commitment to each other. These goddam christians that spout moral reasons for their vote at the same time as accepting big tax cuts is the definition of hypocrisy.

But there are REAL christians out there who do view poverty as big a social issue as gay marriage - if the Democrats can really infiltrate the church's and present themselves as a party that does value TRUE christian values, rather than wedge politics, maybe some of those votes can go over.

And they really do need to mobilise the black vote more - can anyone tell me what % of blacks actually voted? Are there enough black people to counteract the bible belt if they all turned out to vote?

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 05:26 AM
Okay. As all of you know, a political thread such as this cannot be unresponded to by myself. It is important to put this whole election into the proper perspective. I am sure many of the more liberal minded people who post here will shudder at the thought of the likes of ILS,the conservative, trying to be unbiased politically but nonetheless I am going to attempt to do so here.

Firstly, is the outcome of the election really that big of a surprise? When one looks at the present condition of the world, one must know that America is ill at ease. Most Americans, particularly here in the south, feel the need to have a leader which is going to speak with some moral clarity. Did John Kerry at any point really do that? Did he ever sufficiently define where he stood on any issue? I don't mean giving broad strokes and swipes at what he wanted to do, but actually clearly defining what he wanted to do and how he was going to go about doing it. Anyone can stand in front of a crowd of people and say what needs to be done or what they plan on doing without giving clear and precise explanations as to how he/she will do it.

Secondly,there is no doubt that America is in a cultural war. It is a,at least so far, verbal war. It is a war between Secularist and Traditionalist. It is a war between humanism and religion. I,myself, am basically on the side of the Traditionalist movement. I believe in religion;I am Pro-Life; I am Anti-abortion,to an extent; I believe that marriage is a union between a man and a woman; et cetera. Therefore,I am going to vote for the candidate which represents my values and moral sensibilities. America has got to re-develop morality. We have certainly lost any sense of it in the past 25-40 years.

Thirdly,Iraq. Oh,yes, the jubber wubber itself rears its ugly head. Now,I cannot honestly say that I was in favor of invading Iraq because I was not. However, since we are there we have got to see it through. There can be no backing away from this one,folks. America cannot run from this like we did Vietnam. Vietnam was a winnable war, yet, we chose to back away just as we were about to tighten the hangman's noose. We do not have that convenience in this particular conflict. If we back away from this conflict it will send the message to the world that we are weak and vulnerable to criticism. Many Americans, I certainly did, went to the voting booths with the belief that it would be silly to change horses in the middle of the stream.

With all of these issues being mentioned, it is pertinent that people realize that Americans are not obligated to change courses in the middle of a torrent stream. Does it make any sense to change coach's in the middle of a season when you are three games above .500? I don't think so. Politics is much the same way. Most people are not going to change leaders just because others cry out.

During the debates, I saw something in Kerry which irked me. He stood there and spatted out plan after plan without giving any clear account as to how he would accomplish that which he was promising. He just did not come across to American public very well.

What should the Democrats do? I don't really know. The Democrats do not seem to have any real potential candidates other than Hilary Clinton and possibly John Edwards. I personally would have rather seen Edwards run this year then Kerry, but that is just me. I think the Democrats should more clearly define what they stand for. Explanations seem to be hard to come by for the Democrats. They are good at laying out goals but not so good at explaining how they intend to achieve them. This is something they will have to work on if they intend to have any chance of winning in 2008.

Most likely the Republicans will have someone like John McCain or Rudy Giuliani as a candidate. So the Democrats will have to have a rather charismatic figure on their ballot to stand much of a chance. A John Edwards would be ideal. I don't think a Howard Dean or Dick Gephardt would fit the bill against the likes of a McCain or Giuliani. Gephardt or Dean would probably lose in a landslide against competition like that.

AjdeNate!
Nov 9th, 2004, 05:32 AM
Be strong, we'll perservere. We always do!

Volcana
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:29 AM
Most Americans, particularly here in the south, feel the need to have a leader which is going to speak with some moral clarity. Did John Kerry at any point really do that? Did he ever sufficiently define where he stood on any issue? I don't mean giving broad strokes and swipes at what he wanted to do, but actually clearly defining what he wanted to do and how he was going to go about doing it.Yes. Much more so than Bush did. If you want chapter and verse I'll be happy to provide it in another thread.

However, that battle lost, and the freedoms for government control that once defined America with it.

Bush and his minions can only be opposed now. And like the Ku Klux Klan that became the White Citizens Councils that became the Council of Conservative Citizens, all we can do is fight til they are all dead, and we have burned their houses down and salted the earth.

Bush has chosen, quite consciously, to make common cause withthose who oppose Black peple having the rights that generation after generation have bled and fought and died for. Faced with report after report of the denial of the right to vote for Blacks he did and said NOTHING, in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 or 2004.

In some ways, I suppose, I am much like Bush, in that I feel, about white supremacists, they way he CLAIMS to feel about 'terrorists'.

As far as I'm concerned, white supremacists, those that support them, those that fund them, those that make common cause with them, are all my enemies, to my last dying breathe. I am, of course, constrained by issued of legality. Were I not, I would, quite cheerfully, kill each and every one of them with my own hand. And of course, that would include EVERYONE involved, at any level, in the suppression of the voting rights of Blacks, including every false challenge of anyone's right to vote.

We ARE enemies, make no mistake. We are not disagreeing parties with the same common interest. We are enemies. And I will not make the mistake of thinking of current 'leadership' of the country as other than that. I shall treat then as they've treated me.

jelena4me
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:56 AM
Good honest viewpoints!!

Not being from the USA can you explain something.
In the above texts you talk about the "black vote" and the "christian vote" as if they were two mutually exclusive groups.
I thought that the black community were well ensconced in christianity in the south, or is the "bible belt" predominantly white?

Forgive me if this sounds stupid.

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 07:10 AM
Good honest viewpoints!!

Not being from the USA can you explain something.
In the above texts you talk about the "black vote" and the "christian vote" as if they were two mutually exclusive groups.
I thought that the black community were well ensconced in christianity in the south, or is the "bible belt" predominantly white?

Forgive me if this sounds stupid.
Jelena, the "black vote" tends to be very liberal. They tend to vote Democrat,while the over-all "Christian vote" tends to be very conservative and votes Republican. That is where the big difference is in my opinion.

Halardfan
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:32 AM
Its frightening that the Republicans have harnessed the support of groups that are not merely Christian, but fundementalist Christian...I don't for a moment believe that such peoples objection lies solely with issues like Gay Marriage, but rather it extends to the whole swathe of progressive legislation that arose out of the 1960's...

Of course they are too smart now to fight publicly on that platform...so instead they focus in on narrower issues...e.g Gay Marriage, 'Partial-birth abortion'...trying to chip away, gain a foothold for their cause, then push through the rest of their agenda.

When I see a man like Jerry Falwell, then I see an evil man...to borrow the terms the Chrsitian fundmentalists like to use. It is a battle with evil, but in the opposite manner in which they think!

Frankly the Democrats too often have been a letdown, lacking fire, conviction, to eager appeal to the few listless people in the middle who can't make their minds up about anything.

In the long run, America needs a more proportional voting sytem where smaller parties can take hold, where a truly radical party can develop and have a voice, be it green, socialist, or libertarian or whatever.

Sam L
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:54 AM
Volcana, all minorities need to stick together: blacks, jews, latinos, native-americans, gays. Everyone.

Bush asked for unity. DON'T GIVE HIM THAT. Unite AGAINST his conservative movement.

Also, I read on another board, and I'm not too familiar with American history but that Lyndon Johnson lost an entire generation of white conservative voters due to the Civil Rights of the 1960's.

Those white conservatives are still around and so are their children. The core Republican base that's built around racial hatred will still be around for awhile.

I mean there are even some posters on this board who voted Republican because "Democrats give out hand-outs to blacks" and some say that "Abortion is most common amongst blacks and blacks would be extinct in some 30 years" --> That's what I read on another board. Can you believe the excuses and reasons they come up with?

They don't like to admit it and they hate that word - Racist - but keep shoving it in their faces because deep in their hearts, they know they are.

Tennis Fool
Nov 9th, 2004, 10:06 AM
Being the optimist that I am, liberalism and conservatism in the US go in cycles. We'll see another liberal period.

Sam L
Nov 9th, 2004, 10:14 AM
Being the optimist that I am, liberalism and conservatism in the US go in cycles. We'll see another liberal period.
Actually I was going to post a thread on that. But I'll comment briefly here.

I read a scary article about Karl Rove, will post tomorrow, and it said about how America under Bush is heading back towards the 1950's morals and values etc.. I was just going to say that in that case the 1960's offered a complete opposite in thinking. And like I've said since the election, progress will always be made on social issues it's just that is presents an obstacle and it will slow that progress down but it won't stop it and it certainly won't reverse it.

They can't do anything unless you allow them to.

Steff_forever
Nov 9th, 2004, 10:18 AM
Volcana !

Plz stay in the US. If people like you leaving this 'once upon a time country' what's left ? Another McCarthy era ? Blacks have to stand up again if a white enters the bus ? Non-Christians and dissenting people are non-patriots ?
No, plz stay. I just thought to come to the US - and if I'm not imprisoned just from the airport - there's one more liberal vote then ...

One day ...

flyingmachine
Nov 9th, 2004, 10:23 AM
Volcana, all minorities need to stick together: blacks, jews, latinos, native-americans, gays. Everyone.

Bush asked for unity. DON'T GIVE HIM THAT. Unite AGAINST his conservative movement.
Everyone who hate Bush and his Christian fundementalism should note that!

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 01:58 PM
Hey,I have an idea!!! Let's turn everything into a racial issue!!! :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: Great plan. :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :o

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 02:01 PM
True christians would look at the poverty figures and would look at POVERY as a MORAL issue.
Mark Chapter 14:

3 And while he was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, seated at table, there came a woman with a bottle of perfumed oil of great price; and when the bottle was broken she put the perfume on his head. 4 But some of them were angry among themselves, saying, For what purpose has this oil been wasted? 5 We might have got more than three hundred pence for it, and given the money to the poor. And they said things against her among themselves. 6 But Jesus said, Let her be; why are you troubling her? she has done a kind act to me. 7 The poor you have ever with you, and whenever you have the desire you may do them good: but me you have not for ever.


These words were spoken by Jesus himself to his disciples. Yes, Christians should do what we can for the poor, but Jesus is to be the primary focus of a Christian.

In my church, we have a food closet and give food to those who are needy. In this way, we show the love of Christ.

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 02:06 PM
Bush and his minions can only be opposed now. And like the Ku Klux Klan that became the White Citizens Councils that became the Council of Conservative Citizens, all we can do is fight til they are all dead, and we have burned their houses down and salted the earth.

Volcana,

You are beginning to scare me... I know you're disappointed about the election, but are these comments really necessary???

ptkten
Nov 9th, 2004, 05:56 PM
The worst thing any liberal can do is leave the country and run from their problems. We need to stay here, so we can regroup and come back stronger in the next election. If everyone moves away, there will be no one here to fight against the government, and elect good people back into office in 4 years.

Bacardi
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:04 PM
How can we stay here and regroup, when I honestly believe in 2004 they cheated just as they did in 2000? How can we fight a system, that's designed to cut us off at every turn?

CC
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:07 PM
Sometimes I wish for anarchy.

CC
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:08 PM
And drunken bliss.

Crazy Canuck
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:17 PM
Hey,I have an idea!!! Let's turn everything into a racial issue!!! :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: Great plan. :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :o
RIght, because totally ignoring racial issues is a *much* better idea, right?

Bacardi
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:27 PM
RIght, because totally ignoring racial issues is a *much* better idea, right?

I think it's safe to assume I Love Sharapova is a white male. :o

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 06:40 PM
Bacardi -

May I ask how old you are? Just curious...

Thanks,

Nash

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 07:58 PM
RIght, because totally ignoring racial issues is a *much* better idea, right?
Canuck,Must you always challenge me? :p :lol:

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:01 PM
I think it's safe to assume I Love Sharapova is a white male. :o
That's a rather safe assumption. What of it? :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

Bacardi
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:29 PM
Bacardi -

May I ask how old you are? Just curious...

Thanks,

Nash

25 in less than a month

Bacardi
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:30 PM
That's a rather safe assumption. What of it? :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

Well it's easy to downgrade race as being of importance when you are a WHITE MALE. I think Volcana has a valid point. It's already proven we have a homophobe in office, I'm sure to a degree he's racist too. Everyone, actually each individual in the USA has a reason to fear W and what a joke our Nation is becoming.

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:34 PM
Well it's easy to downgrade race as being of importance when you are a WHITE MALE. I think Volcana has a valid point. It's already proven we have a homophobe in office, I'm sure to a degree he's racist too. Everyone, actually each individual in the USA has a reason to fear W and what a joke our Nation is becoming.
Whatever,Bacardi.I certainly am not going to waste my time trying to make you think sensibly.

Philbo
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:39 PM
Mark Chapter 14:

3 And while he was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, seated at table, there came a woman with a bottle of perfumed oil of great price; and when the bottle was broken she put the perfume on his head. 4 But some of them were angry among themselves, saying, For what purpose has this oil been wasted? 5 We might have got more than three hundred pence for it, and given the money to the poor. And they said things against her among themselves. 6 But Jesus said, Let her be; why are you troubling her? she has done a kind act to me. 7 The poor you have ever with you, and whenever you have the desire you may do them good: but me you have not for ever.


These words were spoken by Jesus himself to his disciples. Yes, Christians should do what we can for the poor, but Jesus is to be the primary focus of a Christian.

In my church, we have a food closet and give food to those who are needy. In this way, we show the love of Christ.
Having a food closet at your local church is a nice, small thing, but what about challenging thegovernemnt on policies that SO obviously favour the rich, and widen the gap between rich and poor even further?

Where is the 'moral' outrage over the millions of americans living in poverty from the christian right? Its virtually non existent. But just mention the possibility of two men or women professing a lifelong commitment and the moral majority is out in droves.

It just shows how HATEFUL and HYPOCRITICAL most of the christian conservative community is. They preach christian values but have no compassion at all.

I Love Sharapova
Nov 9th, 2004, 08:52 PM
Having a food closet at your local church is a nice, small thing, but what about challenging thegovernemnt on policies that SO obviously favour the rich, and widen the gap between rich and poor even further?

Where is the 'moral' outrage over the millions of americans living in poverty from the christian right? Its virtually non existent. But just mention the possibility of two men or women professing a lifelong commitment and the moral majority is out in droves.

It just shows how HATEFUL and HYPOCRITICAL most of the christian conservative community is. They preach christian values but have no compassion at all.
I understand where you are coming from. However, being a WHITE MALE as BACARDI so poetically pointed out may skew my vision a little. With that being said, I think it is important that one realizes what morality really is. Morality is the principles by which one LIVES by. It is not based upon poverty or any other such thing.

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:13 PM
Having a food closet at your local church is a nice, small thing, but what about challenging thegovernemnt on policies that SO obviously favour the rich, and widen the gap between rich and poor even further?

Where is the 'moral' outrage over the millions of americans living in poverty from the christian right? Its virtually non existent. But just mention the possibility of two men or women professing a lifelong commitment and the moral majority is out in droves.

It just shows how HATEFUL and HYPOCRITICAL most of the christian conservative community is. They preach christian values but have no compassion at all.
What are these policies that so obviously favor the rich? When Clinton was President there were poor people. There have ALWAYS BEEN poor people and ALWAYS WILL BE poor people. I myself grew up very poor. My mother raised me and had to work two jobs just to make ends meet. Yet, she saved what she could and always took responsibility for her actions. She sacrificed her own needs to make sure I had plenty. She didn't go out and waste all her savings on booze and drugs and other crap.

There are certainly many people in poverty today who have no other choice. And those folks absolutely need our help and compassion. But for every person who is in that situation, there are two or three that choose to live off the government when they could get up and get a job. Maybe not a high paying job, but enough to make a living. Remember, the Bible says that he that provides not for his own family is worse than an infidel.

Hey, I grew up in rural, redneck America. I know poverty. And, I just don't see it the same way you do. Personal ambition and diligence go a long way to reducing poverty, and that's something that the government will be unable to fix under ANY administration.

wayitis
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:27 PM
the problem, Nash, is that you make it sound too much like living in poverty is a question of personal choice... I too believe in the reaps of personal labour and sacrifices to reach a higher standard of living. But I am not naive to the point of believing that lack of hard work is the only thing that is holding those folks back. Poverty can be a vicious cycle that can be extremely difficult to surpass without guidance and unassuming help. I've seen many hard, honest workers who manage only to have ends meet in the end of the month. And those are the ones who need the most help, the ones that i feel are being constantly used and then abandoned for all kinds of political or economic purposes.

Helen Lawson
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:30 PM
What are these policies that so obviously favor the rich? When Clinton was President there were poor people. There have ALWAYS BEEN poor people and ALWAYS WILL BE poor people. I myself grew up very poor. My mother raised me and had to work two jobs just to make ends meet. Yet, she saved what she could and always took responsibility for her actions. She sacrificed her own needs to make sure I had plenty. She didn't go out and waste all her savings on booze and drugs and other crap.

There are certainly many people in poverty today who have no other choice. And those folks absolutely need our help and compassion. But for every person who is in that situation, there are two or three that choose to live off the government when they could get up and get a job. Maybe not a high paying job, but enough to make a living. Remember, the Bible says that he that provides not for his own family is worse than an infidel.

Hey, I grew up in rural, redneck America. I know poverty. And, I just don't see it the same way you do. Personal ambition and diligence go a long way to reducing poverty, and that's something that the government will be unable to fix under ANY administration.
Well I'm living proof of that, babe. I grew up in extreme poverty in Brooklyn with mom favoring Florence and dad as the milksop. The Depression had no effect on us, we were so poor there was no difference. Hell, my life's dream at age 10 was clean clothes and towels that weren't rancid. But through hard work, ambition, and a never-say-die attitude, I became an international movie star/icon/Broadway light and Academy Award winner for Best Actress. And most of all, I made dough. Tons and tons of dough. I didn't want to go back to Brooklyn! I never had to.

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:38 PM
I agree that not very many people would choose to be poor. Sounds as if we agree that hard work can go a long way to reducing poverty. Sounds like we also agree that there are people who have legitimate needs that we should be doing our best to help.

Now what were we disagreeing on??? :-) Oh yes, the government. I just think that so many people are blaming the government regarding poverty when they could be doing something about it themselves. A food closet in a local church may be a small thing, but a food closet in every church in America is not. And, not only churches, but secular organizations could be doing their part, too. Why blame the government?

wayitis
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:46 PM
because liked or not, the Government is the largest institution and the best equipped one to help. I do not favour easy hand-outs for statistical gains, but every Government has the social obligation to provide for the less fortunate and more important, make sure there will be ways or at least hope for a better life to those who are willing to work for it...

Helen Lawson
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:47 PM
The government didn't do jack-shit for me when I was trying to claw my way out of Brooklyn. In fact, it was the government who was the biggest threat, when they broke up the movie studios over antitrust concerns, I could have been in a real spot. I mean, being a struggling up-and-coming actress and all, the monopolizatoin and price fixing of the studios and all really helped me. For instance, if it wasn't for ill-gotten money from the public, the studio never could have afforded anyone besides Paulette Goddard, John Wayne, and Ray Milland for Reap the Wild Wind, but they could afford a then a B-priced struggling actress like me as the fourth lead, and it was one of the roles that really got me noticed. By the time those buttinskis government types broke up the studios, I was already an established movie star so it didn't matter to me.

So, I can't say the government did me any favors in overcoming poverty.

nash
Nov 9th, 2004, 09:51 PM
Yes, but the government *is* doing things to help the poor. Many on the board make it seem as if the Republican party is deliberately trying to supress the poor. I just don't see that. Maybe they could be doing more, sure. But the same goes for the Democrats. After all, there are many states with Democratic governors. Those states have poor people. Why aren't the Democrats doing more???

What I'm trying to get at, is that basically a lot of people just want to groan and moan about the government instead of doing something productive to help.

Philbo
Nov 10th, 2004, 02:27 AM
Nash - Its commonly known that in the last 4 years more people slipped below the poverty line than when Clinton was in power. thats a fact. Bush's policies are obviously more in favour of employers than employees - he looks after the corporations moreso than the little people. How many times did we hear about the plethora of jobs in middle america that have been outsourced to India etc? Bush is the first president where jobs actually suffered a net loss under his leadership.

Yes, hard work and perserverance can help get you out of Poverty - but you were at least BLESSED with a Mother who worked 2 jobs and made ends meet - you at least had an example of how that can work. Not everyone is as lucky as you. Some people are born into poverty sticken families and an environment that makes it next to impossible to break free of - even if you have the best intentions of studying and working hard and breaking out of the cycle - but you live in a family that has parents who have substance abuse issues, theres no work around, and you have 10 brothers and sisters that you need to take care of - that would be impossible to still study and 'work hard' to get out of poverty.

The point Im trying to make is that not everyone is as lucky as you.

I love Sharapova - you said "Morality is the principles by which one LIVES by. It is not based upon poverty or any other such thing"

My point there is exactly what you said MORALITY IS THE PRINCIPLES BY WHCH ONE LIVES. And my point is that standing by and seeing people living in poverty - and saying 'thats fine, they just didnt work hard enough' shows a LACK OF MORALITY.

The christians who take their tax cuts whilst standing by and accepting too many peole going to bed hungry, shows SELECTIVE morality - its okay for thousands to be starving and homeless etc, but its not ok for gays to marry or for stem cell research to be done on foetuses that would otherwise be thrown away..Its this SELECTIVE morality that shits me.

And nash the reason the government is to blame is ebcause the governemtn administers the gross domestic product of the nation - they decide what money should be spent on, so of course the most of the blame lies there.

Tennis Fool
Nov 10th, 2004, 04:00 AM
Actually I was going to post a thread on that. But I'll comment briefly here.

I read a scary article about Karl Rove, will post tomorrow, and it said about how America under Bush is heading back towards the 1950's morals and values etc.. I was just going to say that in that case the 1960's offered a complete opposite in thinking. And like I've said since the election, progress will always be made on social issues it's just that is presents an obstacle and it will slow that progress down but it won't stop it and it certainly won't reverse it.

They can't do anything unless you allow them to.
Well, I'm not a big believer in long-term progress (as if this generation is better than the last, and the next generation will be better than ours). I think, as I said, there are cycles. There are also waves. Who knows, maybe the 1960s or maybe the 1990s was the high point in American society, and after a slow incline of progress, we are in a slow decline. Think of the Roman Empire. It was once a democracy, too.

Tennis Fool
Nov 10th, 2004, 04:08 AM
I agree that not very many people would choose to be poor. Sounds as if we agree that hard work can go a long way to reducing poverty. Sounds like we also agree that there are people who have legitimate needs that we should be doing our best to help.

Now what were we disagreeing on??? :-) Oh yes, the government. I just think that so many people are blaming the government regarding poverty when they could be doing something about it themselves. A food closet in a local church may be a small thing, but a food closet in every church in America is not. And, not only churches, but secular organizations could be doing their part, too. Why blame the government?
Poor people=Work hard for the money.
Rich people=Money works hard to make more money.

You heard of that little legalized gambling junket called the stock market? You just put a little of your $10,000 in it, throw some dice, and-wa la! You have $100,000 more! You put another $10,000 in real estate and watch the property return a profit of 100 percent! Just relax, go to the beach, and let those Wal-Mart minions ask "may I help you, sir?" while scrambling to go to night school to become a nurse. Oops have to drop out, the rent just went up and you have an operation that your insurance wont' cover. You tend to drink on the weekends.

But hey, you're lazy. Get to work!

Volcana
Nov 10th, 2004, 04:29 AM
Volcana,

You are beginning to scare me... I know you're disappointed about the election, but are these comments really necessary???Yes, those comments were necessary. Too many of my people died for the right to vote. Anyone attempting to take it away is an enemy, not merely a political opponent.

As to hard work being a solution, certainly it is, WHEN OPPORTUNITES ARE EQUAL.

But opportunities in the USA have NEVER been equal, even when diligence and effort were. Thomas Jeeferson's slaves worked far harder, and in far worse conditions, that Jefferson ever did. What did it gain them?

A bike messenger works far harder that a software designer. But if you grew up in an area too poor for you to get the education necessary to be software designer, you may be the bike messenger.

Compare and contrast.

A child who doesn't eat breakfast, goes to an elementary school with 50 students to a class, and who walks home through gunshots. No art, no music, no sports.

A child who eats breakfast every morning, goes to a school with 20 children to class, and is picked up in an SUV after school. art music sports.

Multiply by 12 years.

Who's more ready for college? The difference isn't diligence or effort. It's opportunity. And becasue America funds it educationsystem through property taxes, the difference between rich and poor is reflected inthe education system, so it, in effect, PERPETUATES the difference between rich and poor. Sure some people make the jump from poor to rich. But the structure of AMerican society mitgates AGAINST it.

It is easier in almost any country in Europe to go from poor to rich than it is in the United States. There actually a very good study onthis that was done in the last ten years. I'll try to find a link to it.

DeDe4925
Nov 10th, 2004, 04:51 AM
Volcana I just wish there was something I could do to help the feelings of utter despair you, me, and countless others across the GLOBE feel about the result...

My faith in humanity has really taken a huge battering... But then I think about the fact that it only came down to one or two states and the result could have been so different.

I really think the democrats need to infiltrate the church's and the whole bible belt community as the Republicans have done. I think there is the chance of stealing some of their votes there from TRUE christians.

True christians would look at the poverty figures and would look at POVERY as a MORAL issue - not just whether same sex couples are allowed to make a lifelong commitment to each other. These goddam christians that spout moral reasons for their vote at the same time as accepting big tax cuts is the definition of hypocrisy.

But there are REAL christians out there who do view poverty as big a social issue as gay marriage - if the Democrats can really infiltrate the church's and present themselves as a party that does value TRUE christian values, rather than wedge politics, maybe some of those votes can go over.

And they really do need to mobilise the black vote more - can anyone tell me what % of blacks actually voted? Are there enough black people to counteract the bible belt if they all turned out to vote?
That's the key...TRUE CHRISTIANS. It's easy to say you're Christian and spout right wing rhetoric, but to be a true Christian is a much harder task. It means living by the tenets of the faith, i.e. love, compassion, forgiveness, passivity, faith, hope and charity. Has Bush or the Christian fundamentalists that voted for him demonstrated any of these?

Philbo
Nov 10th, 2004, 05:05 AM
That's the key...TRUE CHRISTIANS. It's easy to say you're Christian and spout right wing rhetoric, but to be a true Christian is a much harder task. It means living by the tenets of the faith, i.e. love, compassion, forgiveness, passivity, faith, hope and charity. Has Bush or the Christian fundamentalists that voted for him demonstrated any of these?
:worship: :worship:

nash
Nov 10th, 2004, 02:21 PM
Nash - Its commonly known that in the last 4 years more people slipped below the poverty line than when Clinton was in power. thats a fact. Bush's policies are obviously more in favour of employers than employees - he looks after the corporations moreso than the little people. How many times did we hear about the plethora of jobs in middle america that have been outsourced to India etc? Bush is the first president where jobs actually suffered a net loss under his leadership.

Yes, hard work and perserverance can help get you out of Poverty - but you were at least BLESSED with a Mother who worked 2 jobs and made ends meet - you at least had an example of how that can work. Not everyone is as lucky as you. Some people are born into poverty sticken families and an environment that makes it next to impossible to break free of - even if you have the best intentions of studying and working hard and breaking out of the cycle - but you live in a family that has parents who have substance abuse issues, theres no work around, and you have 10 brothers and sisters that you need to take care of - that would be impossible to still study and 'work hard' to get out of poverty.

The point Im trying to make is that not everyone is as lucky as you.

I love Sharapova - you said "Morality is the principles by which one LIVES by. It is not based upon poverty or any other such thing"

My point there is exactly what you said MORALITY IS THE PRINCIPLES BY WHCH ONE LIVES. And my point is that standing by and seeing people living in poverty - and saying 'thats fine, they just didnt work hard enough' shows a LACK OF MORALITY.

The christians who take their tax cuts whilst standing by and accepting too many peole going to bed hungry, shows SELECTIVE morality - its okay for thousands to be starving and homeless etc, but its not ok for gays to marry or for stem cell research to be done on foetuses that would otherwise be thrown away..Its this SELECTIVE morality that shits me.

And nash the reason the government is to blame is ebcause the governemtn administers the gross domestic product of the nation - they decide what money should be spent on, so of course the most of the blame lies there.
I don't believe in luck. And, you're right, I was very blessed to have the mother that I had.

But, what I don't understand is that everyone seems to think that John Kerry and/or the Democratic party has the solution to ending poverty in America.

Hello?

nash
Nov 10th, 2004, 02:27 PM
Compare and contrast.

A child who doesn't eat breakfast, goes to an elementary school with 50 students to a class, and who walks home through gunshots. No art, no music, no sports.

A child who eats breakfast every morning, goes to a school with 20 children to class, and is picked up in an SUV after school. art music sports.

Multiply by 12 years.

Who's more ready for college? The difference isn't diligence or effort. It's opportunity. And becasue America funds it educationsystem through property taxes, the difference between rich and poor is reflected inthe education system, so it, in effect, PERPETUATES the difference between rich and poor. Sure some people make the jump from poor to rich. But the structure of AMerican society mitgates AGAINST it.


So what do you want? Communism? I believe there's opportunity out there for people who want to take it. Sitting back and blaming the government for the environment you were born in will only make you bitter and unproductive. There are tons of examples of people who grew up in extreme poverty and overcame it through determination, focus, and diligence.

And please explain how John Kerry will resolve the situation of the child who
doesn't eat breakfast, goes to an elementary school with 50 students to a class, and who walks home through gunshots. No art, no music, no sports. Do you honestly think that if he were president, things would really be that different? I just don't see it...

Fingon
Nov 10th, 2004, 02:38 PM
So what do you want? Communism? I believe there's opportunity out there for people who want to take it. Sitting back and blaming the government for the environment you were born in will only make you bitter and unproductive. There are tons of examples of people who grew up in extreme poverty and overcame it through determination, focus, and diligence.

And please explain how John Kerry will resolve the situation of the child who
doesn't eat breakfast, goes to an elementary school with 50 students to a class, and who walks home through gunshots. No art, no music, no sports. Do you honestly think that if he were president, things would really be that different? I just don't see it...
Nash, it's the classic example of people complaining about things, pointing out problems that do exist, but not offering a solution, not even a better approach.

And by solution I understand a workable solution, a solution that cannot be applied (eg adopting European culture) are worthless and are just a waste of time.

This position reminds me of the US Secretary General, he just opposes any action but doesn't give a valid alternative. He opposes the US rooting out the rebels in Fallujah but I am waiting to see what he proposes instead.

This is similar, it's easy to enumerate problems, that's pretty obvious for anyone with half a brain, and can be applied to nearly any country, there isn't an wonderland in the real world, but when time to find solutions come, they are speechless.

Philbo
Nov 10th, 2004, 08:44 PM
Nash, it's the classic example of people complaining about things, pointing out problems that do exist, but not offering a solution, not even a better approach.

And by solution I understand a workable solution, a solution that cannot be applied (eg adopting European culture) are worthless and are just a waste of time.

This position reminds me of the US Secretary General, he just opposes any action but doesn't give a valid alternative. He opposes the US rooting out the rebels in Fallujah but I am waiting to see what he proposes instead.

This is similar, it's easy to enumerate problems, that's pretty obvious for anyone with half a brain, and can be applied to nearly any country, there isn't an wonderland in the real world, but when time to find solutions come, they are speechless.
What crap.



No workable solutions? Hello... Was i the only one who heard John Kerry talk endlessly during the campaign about rebuilding America's alliances with other countries tht Bush has destroyed with his pre-emptove unneccesary war mongering?

Thats a better idea than Bush's.

ANd the fact is that Bush has had 4 years to address many problems and his record is one of failure - on job creation, more people DONT have health insurance than before he took power - the list goes on.

When you have a PROVEN failure, it makes more logical sense to get rid of them.

We arent just complaining without any better option - Kerry's ideas would have lessened world anger towards america because it basically couldnt be any worse.

Volcana
Nov 10th, 2004, 10:20 PM
I believe there's opportunity out there for people who want to take it.Including the not-at-all hypithetical child detailed hereAnd please explain how John Kerry will resolve the situation of the child who doesn't eat breakfast, goes to an elementary school with 50 students to a class, and who walks home through gunshots. No art, no music, no sports.Do you honestly think that if he were president, things would really be that different?yes.I just don't see it...are you looking?

Doesn't eat breakfast - Federal funding for breakfast programs is poor districts was part of what got cut when Bush went over to 'block grants' to the states. Some states continued feeding poor kids. Some gave additional tax breaks to the wealthy. Restoring that program at the Federal lelel guarantees those kids at least one decent meal a day.

50 Students to a class - Kerry favored increased Federal funding to hire more teachers. More teachers means fewer students per teacher

Gunshots - Bush cut Clinton's program for providing Federal money to increase the number of police officers, and is opposed to gun control. Kerry favored bringing back Clinton's program for Federal funding of more police officers, and favored more gun control. More cops, fewer guns, fewr bullets for kids to wlak home through

No art, no music, no sports - Kerry didn't promise to bring those back.

However, in the main, I think your whole line of arguement is spurious. You essentially saying that since 1 person in 1000 can succeed against heavy odds, there's no need to lessen those odds. I disagree. If everyone has adequate opportunity, then and ONLY then, do effort, diligence and ability allow the best to rise.

If you're born rich enough, you can be a drunken, drug addicted, unmotivated slacker, still get into college, barely manage a C average there, be unsuccessful in virtually every business endeavor you try, then become President of the United States.

That simply doesn't happen if you're born poor.

It's very comforting, if you're relatively comfortable, to fool yourself into believing you deserve it all because of you level of effort. But it simply isn't true. And BTW, the poor are NOT, by and large, waiting around for the government to bail them out. They're working two and three jobs, and trying like hell to succeed. In a system that is VERY heavily stacked against them.

After I graduated from Cornell, I turned around and spent ten years working as a bike messenger as a day job while trying to make it acting. I saw exactly what people with a poor education and no money go through in New York. These are people working 60 hours a week, outside, in all kinds of whether. I knew I could walk away from that,m and back into the middle class, pretty much whenever I wanted, because, being FROM the middle class, and having a history professor for a father, I had a good understanding of the structure of American society, and how it works against the poor. I worked side by side with an awful lot of people who had very little chance of every escaping poverty, despite how hard they worked. They didn't have the basic education needed to GET out. The wealthy and the middle classes are provided that knowledge. By the government. It's called adequate public schools.

nash
Nov 10th, 2004, 10:38 PM
Volcana,

You are I are so very far apart, that I don't think there's any use to continue... My prayers are with you...

Nash

Volcana
Nov 10th, 2004, 11:05 PM
Where is the 'moral' outrage over the millions of americans living in poverty from the christian right? Its virtually non existent. But just mention the possibility of two men or women professing a lifelong commitment and the moral majority is out in droves.Morality isn't driven by reason, for the most part. Neither is religion.Having a food closet at your local church is a nice, small thing, but what about challenging the governemnt on policies that SO obviously favour the rich, and widen the gap between rich and poor even further?A LOT of people in the United States see absolutely nothing wrong with society having an ever-widening gap between rich and poor. Some even feel the poor SHOULD be miserable, as a motivational tool. I call it the 'We're rich because we're worthy, they're poor because they're UN-worthy' school of thought.

I see no gain in critiquing the morality of this worldview. I disagree with it. I oppose it. But my axioms are not their's. Our worldviews are so far apart that I doubt they'd even recognize themselves in my observations of them.

Somtimes relentless opposition IS the only option.

Having said that, my best political and philosophical discussions in liveworld are with people who vastly disagree with me.

DeDe4925
Nov 10th, 2004, 11:12 PM
Including the not-at-all hypithetical child detailed hereyes.are you looking?

Doesn't eat breakfast - Federal funding for breakfast programs is poor districts was part of what got cut when Bush went over to 'block grants' to the states. Some states continued feeding poor kids. Some gave additional tax breaks to the wealthy. Restoring that program at the Federal lelel guarantees those kids at least one decent meal a day.

50 Students to a class - Kerry favored increased Federal funding to hire more teachers. More teachers means fewer students per teacher

Gunshots - Bush cut Clinton's program for providing Federal money to increase the number of police officers, and is opposed to gun control. Kerry favored bringing back Clinton's program for Federal funding of more police officers, and favored more gun control. More cops, fewer guns, fewr bullets for kids to wlak home through

No art, no music, no sports - Kerry didn't promise to bring those back.

However, in the main, I think your whole line of arguement is spurious. You essentially saying that since 1 person in 1000 can succeed against heavy odds, there's no need to lessen those odds. I disagree. If everyone has adequate opportunity, then and ONLY then, do effort, diligence and ability allow the best to rise.

If you're born rich enough, you can be a drunken, drug addicted, unmotivated slacker, still get into college, barely manage a C average there, be unsuccessful in virtually every business endeavor you try, then become President of the United States.

That simply doesn't happen if you're born poor.

It's very comforting, if you're relatively comfortable, to fool yourself into believing you deserve it all because of you level of effort. But it simply isn't true. And BTW, the poor are NOT, by and large, waiting around for the government to bail them out. They're working two and three jobs, and trying like hell to succeed. In a system that is VERY heavily stacked against them.

After I graduated from Cornell, I turned around and spent ten years working as a bike messenger as a day job while trying to make it acting. I saw exactly what people with a poor education and no money go through in New York. These are people working 60 hours a week, outside, in all kinds of whether. I knew I could walk away from that,m and back into the middle class, pretty much whenever I wanted, because, being FROM the middle class, and having a history professor for a father, I had a good understanding of the structure of American society, and how it works against the poor. I worked side by side with an awful lot of people who had very little chance of every escaping poverty, despite how hard they worked. They didn't have the basic education needed to GET out. The wealthy and the middle classes are provided that knowledge. By the government. It's called adequate public schools.
:worship: :worship: :worship:

DeDe4925
Nov 10th, 2004, 11:15 PM
Nash, it's the classic example of people complaining about things, pointing out problems that do exist, but not offering a solution, not even a better approach.

And by solution I understand a workable solution, a solution that cannot be applied (eg adopting European culture) are worthless and are just a waste of time.

This position reminds me of the US Secretary General, he just opposes any action but doesn't give a valid alternative. He opposes the US rooting out the rebels in Fallujah but I am waiting to see what he proposes instead.

This is similar, it's easy to enumerate problems, that's pretty obvious for anyone with half a brain, and can be applied to nearly any country, there isn't an wonderland in the real world, but when time to find solutions come, they are speechless.
A solution would have been to get rid of a failed U.S. administration who thrives on fear. The definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing expecting different results.

Volcana
Nov 10th, 2004, 11:32 PM
A solution would have been to get rid of a failed U.S. administration who thrives on fear. The definition of insanity is continuing to do the same thing expecting different results.DeDe - Fingon isn't serious. Think about it. Fingon accusing ME of being 'speechless'? Not in this, or any other real world.

Saying we offer no solutions is just his way of saying we annoy him. You can't take everything said here seriously.

DeDe4925
Nov 11th, 2004, 12:23 AM
DeDe - Fingon isn't serious. Think about it. Fingon accusing ME of being 'speechless'? Not in this, or any other real world.

Saying we offer no solutions is just his way of saying we annoy him. You can't everything said here seriously.
True.

Fingon
Nov 11th, 2004, 12:38 AM
True.
well since you agree then I won't bother to answer if I am not taken seriously.

enjoy it.

Justeenium
Nov 11th, 2004, 12:48 AM
:lol: at Volcana. The president can't just snap his fingers and make things happen, he has to get congressional approval.

Volcana
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:26 AM
:lol: at Volcana. The president can't just snap his fingers and make things happen, he has to get congressional approval.As a practical matter, THIS occupant of the oval office, at THIS particular time, CAN, just about, snap his fingers and get what he wants.

Not quite.

But note they are already openly talking about forcing through a rule change inthe Senate to shut off filibuster with a simple majority. If that goes through, Congress is essentially a rubber stamp.

Volcana
Nov 11th, 2004, 04:27 AM
well since you agree then I won't bother to answer if I am not taken seriously.

enjoy it.Well, it's not like you've provided any material for my sig in a while. So what exactly do I owe you? I mean, humor is all fine and good, but that 'speechless' line ....

That's an insult to RatchetMouth-Americans in general, not just me.

Fingon
Nov 11th, 2004, 06:13 AM
Well, it's not like you've provided any material for my sig in a while. So what exactly do I owe you? I mean, humor is all fine and good, but that 'speechless' line ....

That's an insult to RatchetMouth-Americans in general, not just me.
now you can't even read, I said when it comes to find solutions they are speechless, not they are always speechless.

And you are, you are not speechless when it comes to moaning and inciting violence, but you are when it's about finding solutions and trying to make things better.

Volcana
Nov 11th, 2004, 06:23 AM
you are not speechless when it comes to moaning and inciting violence, but you are when it's about finding solutions and trying to make things better.I cheerfully leave it to others who rad this thread as to whether or not I offer solutions, or simply resort to 'moaning and inciting violence'.

I perfectly willing to live with there assessment, expressed or otherwise. i very confident in what I write.

Fingon
Nov 11th, 2004, 06:29 AM
I cheerfully leave it to others who rad this thread as to whether or not I offer solutions, or simply resort to 'moaning and inciting violence'.

I perfectly willing to live with there assessment, expressed or otherwise. i very confident in what I write.
sure you do


If he was upset over Bush being re-elected, it's a shame he shot HIMSELF. Why not aim at the actual problem? Sure the Secret Service would probably get you, but given you're gonna be dead either way, why not try and do the rest of us a favor.:)

I do not, however, make light of his death. He seems a very conscientious person
....
....

History will judge that. The guy who had to go to Vietnam so Bush could be in the Texas AIr National Guard might not see it the same way you do. If HE didn't die in Vietnam.

However, I merely point out that if you are going to see you life end over a certain event, why not end it COUNTERING that event? Success is unlikely, in this case, but what difference does that make? You end up dead in 99% of the possible realities, ither way. But in that telltale 1%, you eliminate the problem you were so upset over.

Volcana
Nov 11th, 2004, 06:36 AM
If he was upset over Bush being re-elected, it's a shame he shot HIMSELF. Why not aim at the actual problem? Sure the Secret Service would probably get you, but given you're gonna be dead either way, why not try and do the rest of us a favor.:)

I do not, however, make light of his death. He seems a very conscientious person
....
....

History will judge that. The guy who had to go to Vietnam so Bush could be in the Texas AIr National Guard might not see it the same way you do. If HE didn't die in Vietnam.

However, I merely point out that if you are going to see you life end over a certain event, why not end it COUNTERING that event? Success is unlikely, in this case, but what difference does that make? You end up dead in 99% of the possible realities, ither way. But in that telltale 1%, you eliminate the problem you were so upset over.It WAS put nicely.

moby
Nov 11th, 2004, 03:15 PM
btw, just a random question
how does morals = christian values
i don't think the two are mutually inclusive

i'm not a christian, but i have my morals, thank you very much
besides, isn't the US supposed to be a secular state?

Simon
Nov 11th, 2004, 08:40 PM
http://www.sorryeverybody.com/gallery/1/

Volcana
Nov 11th, 2004, 09:52 PM
http://www.sorryeverybody.com/gallery/1/Thank you. I'm actually smiling now. That's one hell of a lot of pictures.